Hong Kong Airlines CEO says struggling airline will get cash injection

Dec 6, 2019

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Struggling Hong Kong Airlines may be getting a cash injection in “one or two days” as it battles for survival, according to reports.

In a December 5 interview, CEO Sun Jianfeng told the South China Morning Post, “We will try our best to get enough money,” he said. “But it’s very short notice to get a huge [amount] of money” by Saturday, which is the deadline. A spokesperson for the airline told the newspaper that it had a “secure cash injection plan in place.”

The paper is also reporting that workers were being paid for missed wages. Last month, we reported that some Hong Kong Airlines employees weren’t being paid and the South China Morning Post reported that the airline cut off its in-flight entertainment because it could not afford to pay the vendor.

Earlier this week, Hong Kong’s Air Transport Licensing Authority (ALTA) said the airline must receive a cash infusion and prove it can maintain a certain cash level by Dec. 7.

“After careful consideration of the financial position of HKA [Hong Kong Airlines] at present, ATLA must take immediate and resolute action to prevent further deterioration of HKA’s situation in order to protect public interests,” a spokesman for the authority said in a statement.

As we’ve previously reported, Hong Kong Airlines has been struggling financially for some time now. Authorities in the city are threatening to suspend its operating license if the company doesn’t stabilize its books by the end of the week.

The deterioration of Hong Kong Airlines’ financial position was accelerated by ongoing anti-Chinese protests, which have reduced travel demand. After receiving an update on the company’s finances from its senior executives on Nov. 29, ALTA said that it was not confident that the airline could pay its employees’ salaries or continue to provide satisfactory service to its passengers.

If you’re planning on flying Hong Kong Airlines in the coming days, you should consider precautions — especially for flights beyond Dec. 7. Before your trip, double-check what travel protections are offered by the credit card you used to book the trip and consider travel insurance.

Featured image courtesy of Alberto Riva / The Points Guy

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